ACADIA PARISH, La (KLFY) – The Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Department is taking another step to keep drivers safe on the roads.
The sheriff’s department is now implementing a new communication impediment program where anyone with a communication deficiency can put a bumper sticker on their car to signal officers to be aware.
The stickers serve as a way to keep both the resident and the officer safe.
Crowley resident Pete Bertrand brought this idea to the sheriff’s attention when he was worried about his 18-year-old son’s ability to communicate if he was faced with a stressful situation like a traffic stop or accident.
Bertrand’s son has been diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome.
Acadia parish sheriff K.P. Gibson said the stickers will not only help those with diagnosed impediments but will also help avoid officers from misunderstanding someone’s action, like taking a cell phone out of their pocket.
Bertrand said when he brought this program to the sheriff’s attention, he and his son were concerned about the safety of both the individuals and the officers.
“I could tell he was getting kind of jittery about just the thought of that happening. I just kind of thought is there something out there that would alert an officer that there’s a child or adult in the car that just has a communication deficiency,” Bertrand said.
The program is free and those who wish to have a sticker on their car must register through the sheriff’s office.
They must also have a doctor’s note available.
Gibson said he plans to speak to state lawmakers about making this a statewide program that could include putting notifications on driver’s licenses and license plates.